Open Forum: State audit of regional agency is a wake-up call

San Francisco Chronicle

By Ben Eichenberg, San Francisco Baykeeper

Earlier this month, the state auditor released a report sharply critical of the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission’s lax enforcement efforts. BCDC is the regional agency created in 1965 to protect the bay from illegal filling, dredging and unwise development along the shoreline. A handful of permittees who were recently targeted by BCDC’s enforcement actions felt the agency was too tough on them and imposed inconsistent penalties, so they urged the state to conduct an audit. These lawbreakers have now spun the audit’s conclusions to say their concerns were justified. However, the report in fact reveals that BCDC has been far too lenient and accommodating.